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GAS659 Participation Of Cook And Chefs In Social, Environmental, Cultural Issues Assessment 3 Answer

Assessment 3: Assessment  Overview 

Assessment method: Essay Weighting: 30%  

◻ Word limit or equivalent: 1200 words

  •  Essay – discourse analysis of the different  social, cultural, environmental or political  issues, which cooks/chefs have engaged with  in popular culture and how they have  positioned themselves within these discourses.
  • This essay requires you to identify different social,  cultural, environmental or political issues that  modern chefs have engaged with.  
  • You will need to ascertain  who these chefs/cooks are, what relevant issues pertain to them and how have they ‘positioned’ themselves within the  discussion and discourse that surrounds these issues. ◻ This investigation will also need to explore, where  possible, the motivation that possibly drives these  chefs/cooks to align themselves with particular  issues. 

Step 1. 

  • Identify various issues that modern (alive)  chefs/cooks have engaged with. 



environmental or  

political issues 

  • Identify which chefs/cooks have identified with  these issues.


  • Social Issues. 

E.g. Gordan Ramsay on Cocaine. 

  • Cultural Issues. 

E.g. Rene Redzepi with New Nordic cuisine. 

  • Environmental Issues. 

E.g. Hugh Fearnley- Whittingstall with chicken  and fish. 

  • Political Issues. 

E.g. Jamie Oliver with childhood obesity.

Step 2. 

  • “ how have they ‘positioned’ themselves within  the discussion and discourse that surrounds  these issues.” 

You will need to explain what there position is  and, 

Is there evidence to suggest WHY they may be  motivated to take this position.

Possible structure. 

  • Introduction. (approx. 150 words) 
  • Issues 1. (approx. 200 words) 
  • Issue 2. (approx. 200 words) 
  • Issue 3. (approx. 200 words) 
  • Issue 4. (approx. 200 words)
  • Conclusion. (approx. 250 words)


  • What is this essay about? – chefs/cooks as  agents of social change. 
  • Background history – literature. 
  • What do you hope to achieve?

Each Issue paragraph. 

  • What is the issue – a brief description of the  problem. 
  • Who is the modern chef/cook and what is their  position? 
  • Possible motivation for the chef/cook taken  this position. – is it personal, financial, political  profile, etc.


  • Is there a common theme with the chefs/cooks  and the issues?




The digitalized world, in which we live today, seeks innovation in every respect of life. With the advent of celebrity concept, due to various TV Cookery shows, YouTube channels and social media outreach, the chefs all around the world have gained prominence and are continuing to influence the people. (Giousmpasoglou, Brown & Cooper, 2020) However, the popularity is not limited to the food recipes, but also the active participation in society. The cooks and chefs are entitled to some significant societal responsibilities, being a famous face among the people. The FAO (2019) recognizes the responsibility of the chefs in promoting cultural diversity and healthy diets. In this essay, we aim to discuss the chefs who have taken active participation the working for the social, environmental, cultural and political issues. We will also discuss the impact of their involvement and the reasons that led them to follow their respective paths.  

Social Issue

It is bizarre to imagine people starving for one meal a day. Over the world, even the most developed countries are facing the issue of hunger. The struggle becomes even worse when disasters hit the people. It can be said that there is a direct connection between disasters and food insecurity. (Tirivangasi, 2018) In this regard, the chefs like Jose Andres are stepping out to provide the people with food during the calamities and natural disasters. His nonprofit organization World Central Kitchen (WCF) is devoted to the social cause. The WCF teams are responsible for stepping out and providing the meals to the people, disturbed by poverty or a disaster. As per the data available, the WCF has fed around 45 million people all around the world and continuing its operation amidst pandemic. They are active on social media and allow the volunteers to be a part of the social cause. (World Central Kitchen, 2020) According to Andres (2014), he visited Haiti in 2009 and saw the happiness on the faces of people while he was cooking a dish in a beautiful place called Fond Verretes. When the disaster hit Haiti adversely in 2010, he was moved by the devastation the country suffered and the impact that would remain for the next few years. That was the time when he pledged to work for the people who face disasters and calamities. This was, perhaps the motivation that led to the established of World Central Kitchen by Jose.

Cultural Issue

A person's eating preferences depend hugely on the culture that he follows or lives. The food and culture go hand in hand. Thus, culture has significance, in the food that we prefer eating. While people today quickly assimilate in the different cultures they live in, and food is something that binds the people with the cultures they belong to. (Boutaud, Becuţ & Marinescu, 2016) The chefs all around the world are striving to portray their cultures internationally. Among the others, Massimo Bottura holds a special place, for a simple reason that he aims not just to represent his Italian food culture, but connects the people with their own food cultures. The nonprofit organization Food for Soul was founded in 2016 by the chef and his wife. The organization aims to empower the communities and advocate for a healthy food eating style with the help of the culture they belong to. The organization works with local partners to reduce the food wastage and utilize the left-out food to feed the people. (Food for Soul, 2020) In the year 2013, Bottura portrayed the Italian Food Culture in the United States as an Ambassador for Food. Probably, that urged him to advocate for social changes keeping culture as a strong base. 

Environmental Issue

As per the Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations (UN), the right of people over safe and nutritious food is one of the primary goals. In the same direction, the UN also pitches for sustainable and environmentally friendly agriculture based on innovation that increases production, without any wastage. (Bronson & Knezevic, 2016) A prominent name working in this regard is Emma Dean, who is a winner of MasterChef Australia in 2013. Dean is seen actively taking part in the environmental activities and her book A Homegrown Table: Food to Eat with Family and Friends (2013), she focuses on eating the food that is healthy, nutritious and environmentally friendly. There is little doubt that food has gained utmost prominence due in recent years; that can be seen in the active participation of the policy-makers as well. There is hardly any choice left for people but to opt for organic food. (Béné et al., 2019) In that regard, the active participation of Dean holds significance as she often comes up with recipes that are healthy and reduce the wastage of food. Dean feels connected to the environment; it is inferred from the facts that she grew up on a farm in Victoria State, and she went on to study Environment and Planning.

Political Issue

A country can grow strong when its people eat healthy and nutritious food. There is no wonder why countries spend billions of dollars on providing adequate nutrition to its people. There are international organizations that monitor the countries' performances based on food that people eat. (Benn, 2014) It is good to learn that the chefs today are taking active participation in providing the Food Education to the people. The name of Sean Sherman must be acknowledged in this regard. Sherman has taken numerous initiatives to aware people of the indigenous food, by running a food education business and North American Traditional Indigenous Food Systems, a nonprofit organization. He was entitled to the James Beard Foundation Leadership Award in the year 2017, for his contributions. The foundation recognizes the people who inspire the young cooks, students and educates the people with the indigenous food knowledge. The indigenous food not only provides nutrition to the people but can also affect the tourism industry. People today, look for innovations in everything and food being an essential can be helpful in that regard. (Mnguni & Giampiccoli, 2019) Sherman has a natural inclination towards the use of indigenous food essentials, and perhaps that led him towards this path. 


The essay helped in learning about the chefs that have contributed to the society in some or the other way. It becomes easy to realize their importance in the different spheres of society. The digitalized world has made it easy for the chefs to be vocal about their presence in the various causes and issues. The chefs are known to adopt an integrated way, to approach to the people. They continue to publish their recipes, organize the cookery shows, and along with that, they use social media to create awareness regarding the cause they are working on. The massive support of the people who follow them on platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc., can be influenced positively if the efforts of the cooks and chefs are in the right direction. (Clarke, Murphy & Adler, 2016) However, this also makes the chefs vulnerable to criticism, as our society is highly diverse. While concluding, it can be said that the chefs must take active participation in the different issues discussed in the essay above, and be cautious while taking any stand, as it must not affect the harmony of the society.

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